Josh Lanyon : Q & A
Hi Josh, thanks so much for agreeing to answer some questions here – I’ve been racking my brain trying to come up with something different – you are such a social guy, on so many different forums, that we all feel we know you so well that it’s tough to come up with fresh stuff 😛 . . . . so what size shoe do you wear anyway??
That’s what we really need to know!
European or American? I have big feet. I’m shy about revealing such personal information. Here’s an exclusive — I run around barefoot most of the time. Okay, in the winter, I wear socks. I wear shoes as little as possible. I don’t even wear slippers.
Ok…. Here we go, for reals.
So how was the sabbatical? Was it a variation of the 3 R’s Rest, Rejuvenate and Recharge? Or did it fly by, leaving you thinking “Waugh!! I haven’t done this, that and the other!”?
A little of both! The timing was such, that I was a lot busier than I’d anticipated with resuming control of the bulk of my backlist. There were new covers to commission, new copyediting, new formatting, and then the fun of getting everything uploaded and advertised again. But it was also a wonderful time in that I got together with friends I hadn’t seen in years, I spent time with my family, my SO. I read, I watched movies, I cooked (not well, but I did cook!) and I did a lot of thinking. Oddly enough, mostly what I thought about was writing.
Your whole setup seems to have been totally overhauled during your year “off”- with you now having total control of the process – ebooks, paperbacks (with your choice of covers – which are amazing!!) and audiobooks. How empowering is that?
Very. This is not to say that I haven’t been fortunate in my publishers or that I won’t publish with some of them again, but from here on out I intend to retain control of my wee empire. At the same time, it’s nice once in a while to sit back and just do the writing and let someone else worry about all the rest of it.
I’m pretty nervous. This book is a departure for me and it’s liable to be a disappointment for the readers who have been eagerly waiting for the next standard issue Josh Lanyon. I sort of wish I had fulfilled that expectation first before I asked everyone to make this leap with me.
Talking of mitts… Will we wait long for it to be released in paperback. The cover is so beautiful. It is such a wonderful thing to have had your niece do the artwork. A real family heirloom in the making.
Thank you, Barbie. 🙂 I’m so proud of my niece, because she really did panic when she knew I was going to put her art on a book. The pressure was tough for her. But she did it. Oh, but you were asking about print. Well, the novella is not really long enough to be in print all on its own, so I have to figure out what to pair it with. Right now, I can’t think of anything existing that would work.
Do you feel that you may one day have a big series, like Adrien English, in you again? Personally, I would wait for a yearly installment if I got to experience an amazing read like that once more.
It’s hard to say. Right now I’m not thinking in terms of big, dramatic character arcs — and you really do need that in order to create that kind of a read. I’m thinking more along lines of sequels and next in series books. I have ideas for a few standalones. Maybe I’m just not ready for that emotional investment yet.
The output of so many authors in the m/m genre is prolific – will you struggle to maintain a more relaxed work ethos? Or do you think you will revert to the incredible schedule you had before your sabbatical? Quality and quantity is a balance you have struck perfectly before, but I think your time off has shown your fan base is solid enough for you to do basically what you like!
This year there’s a bit of catching up I need to do. But moving forward, I don’t plan to do more than three or four releases a year. I think more than that and it’s hard to stay inventive and fresh. I want to keep loving the work, but even more important, I want readers to keep loving — and looking forward to — the work.
With such an extensive back catalogue comes a whole lotta names – how do you come up with new ones, for new projects? Do we know the MC names from Winter Kill yet?
For side characters, I grab whatever is around me. For the main characters, I give it a lot of thought. The names really have to feel right before I can start writing. Does that sound odd? Sometimes, even though I’ve used a name before, the name just feels right. That’s why I’ve got a couple of Tims, a couple of Seans, a couple of Adams, a couple of Roberts. Speaking of Adams. Adam Darling is my FBI agent in Winter Kill. And Rob Haskell is the small town deputy sheriff and romantic foil.
Do you prefer Alpha or omega characters? And does this preference change – for you as a writer, and as a reader? I always go for the Alpha. Except for Perry. He kinda broke the mould for me.
I really like a contrast of personality types, I like exploring power dynamics in a relationship. Part of what makes the characters in any relationship interesting is making the reader reconsider ideas of strength and weakness. Strength isn’t about muscles and weakness isn’t about tears. We all have our strengths and weaknesses.
If you could pick any book in your entire back catalogue that you would like to see in celluloid – which would you pick? For either TV or Movie.
I think Fair Game would be the best choice for film. It’s got a lot of action and a lot of plot and it doesn’t depend so heavily on that internal dialog.
Are you a “wregimental-writer” treating it like a 9 to 5 job, or do you follow your muse? Any time. Any where. Any how. And has your process changed post-sabbatical ?
I treat it like I’m suffering from a obsessive-compulsive disorder. 🙂 HOWEVER, I’m trying really hard to learn to work regular hours. I’m trying to have dinner with the SO on a regular basis. I’m trying to still have time for friends and family. I’m trying to build in breaks for gardening and reading and — once summer comes — swimming.
She’s one pushy broad, I must say. I think she owes a lot on her credit cards.
What is the news with your Irregulars Posse? Any chance of more stories in that world ?
Nikki is working on the next Bellingham mystery — which I can’t wait for! Ginn is working on Master of the Black Flame, the next book in the Lord of the White Hell series. And Astrid is working on a brilliant, historial AU opus that I’m not sure she’s discussed anywhere yet, so I won’t spill the beans. I think we’d all love to do more stories in the Irregulars world, but we’ve got to selll through that first print run.
To end off, here are some quick fire questions :
Wine or beer?
Ow! Depends on what I’m eating. As much as I enjoy a glass of wine, nothing goes better with chicken wings than beer.
Last movie you watched?
Last meal you had out?
Mexican dinner ..
Strawberry/Chocolate/or Vanilla ice cream? (or Neapolitan – just to be otherwise!)
The best book you have read recently. Any genre.
Death of a Doll, by Hilda Lawrence
Tab or coke 😛 ?
Coke. Yes, it’s true. I’m on a Coke with crushed ice kick!
Thanks again Josh – it is always such a pleasure to chat with you. Best of luck with Blood Red Butterfly; and everything you hope to achieve in 2013. Welcome back!!
Thank you, Barb. And thank you for inviting me to come and chat! It’s always a pleasure.
And to all that comment here, there are 3 copies of Josh’s new book Blood Red Butterfly up for grabs. Good luck!